The Axalon RPG

Mission #2: The Train of Consequences
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Author:  Psycko [ Wed Feb 17, 2010 2:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

Castor Owens coughed, wiping blood from his mouth. He'd had shrapnel burrow into his armor and cut up his cheek, but was mostly unharmed. He looked up with bafflement at Hex.

"...since when do cactus people go 'round pointin' guns in humans' faces?" he asked, looking blearily up at Hex through eyes still squinting against the glare of the burning flatbed truck behind them.

"Take a closer look." Hex growled, tightening his grip on Owens' collar and pulling him nearer. Owens peered up into Hex's face and his eyes widened with recognition and hatred.

"You're no're another damn robot pretendin' to be one!" he said.

"Well, this damn robot just destroyed your drones, and this damn robot is going to break your neck like kindling unless you give me the codes to stop the bomb!" Hex demanded. The human looked up at him with definite fear, but seemed to gather his nerves, shaking his head resolutely.

"You're just gonna kill me anyhow."

"There are many ways to damage a human without killing him. I'm very familiar with all of them. Here's a starter." Hex said, and punched Owens in the face. His nose broke and he cursed loudly as blood ran over his lip. It was a fraction of a full Cybertronian's strength, but when Hex hit him a second time, and then a third, Arcturus felt compelled to speak up.

"Hey, now. That's probably enough."

Hex looked at him, then down at the human with some surprise. He looked at his own knuckles, now slick with blood. Unsure of what had come over him, Hex stood up, taking a few paces back. The sheriff, Arcturus, stepped over and hauled Owens to his feet. He had a swollen lip and black eye, and his nose was positioned roughly southwest of where it used to be, but he was still conscious, and groaned a little as he was yanked up.

"Ready to defuse that bomb?" Arcturus prompted him.

"Ergh." Owens said in response.

"I'll take that as a yes." Arcturus said, and started to drag the human back down the hill towards Gildtown.


As the gunslingers descended the slope outside town limits, a small number of townspeople- though not all of them, Gildtown was yet another Dustball locale where the residents had long since gotten used to ignoring violent trade-offs- emerged from shops and homes to watch them, and to look at the two fires blazing away on the hilltop.

Arcturus was in the lead, directing Owens along at gunpoint. The human stumbled a little on his feet but had regained enough equilibrium to walk. Sunset was next to him, and Hex, and Fenrir. The others were on their way down as well, though a couple of them had stayed behind to sift through the rubble of the flatbed truck and destroyed drones for salvage.

They reached the door of the Loaded Dice Casino and Arcturus hauled Owens inside. Digger and Agavus parted to let them at the rigged slot machine. Giving them a baleful look, Owens knelt down in front of the machine. He pulled it open in a certain manner that disabled a couple of the triggering mechanisms, and then punched in a numeric code- 20-5-18-18-1. There was a final beep, the red light turned green, and then Owens yanked out several wires and a detonator, depositing them harmlessly on the casino floor.

"There, now," Arcturus said. Leaning his rifle over his shoulder, he stepped over and considered Owens as the human sat back against a column, clutching his side and glaring up at him. "I reckon no amount of bail or legal maneuvering is gonna keep you from taking a shuttle trip to Cocytus this time. For the charges, we'll just start with attempted mass murder."

"Murder-!" Castor Owens snorted, and looked around at the various Cybertronians- their cold metal bodies and glowing optics. "Can't murder something that ain't alive."

"We'll talk ethics later. You're under arrest. Get your ass up." Arcturus replied, pulling Owens up. He turned towards the door, and stopped to nod at Hex and Sunset.

"That could have been a disaster. Thanks for helping out. If you see that rookie Shackle, tell him he's got some catching up to do."

"You know, we usually don't save entire towns for free." Fenrir said pointedly, and Agavus nodded alongside her.

"Well, then." Arcturus said again, rubbing his chin, and favored them with an amused but grateful smile. "We can certainly get you some kind of a reward. The office is getting its next payroll shipment from the #2 train, should be coming along soon. In the meantime, I'd say you bounty hunters earned a little downtime."

With that, he herded the defiant Owens out the door and towards the jail, leaving a gathering small crowd of curious townsfolk to enter the casino, looking at the defused bomb and the new group of gunslingers.

(If anyone's still playing on this board, I'll be ready to move this mission to the last and most hectic part very soon.)

Author:  Pyre [ Wed Feb 17, 2010 12:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

Fenrir stretched her arms above her head, and grinned. A good fight, and some good pay. She hadn't had the chance to put a good use to her strength upgrades, but she imagined that would come along sooner or later. For now though, she planned to spend some of that coming money, in advance. With things in the gambling establishment quickly returning to normal (this was Gildtown, after all), she looked over at her fellow bounty hunters.

"So," she said, and jerked her thumb towards a poker table. "We just avoided a fatal EMP. Who's feeling lucky?"

Author:  riboflavin [ Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

"I'm stuck with you cretins 'til payday, so might as well," said the fembot lurking behind them. Alice stepped further into the casino, rolling her neck to try and work a kink out of it. "You got a game?"

Fenrir looked around the floor and her eyes settled on an empty table. "Well I haven't played hole em in a while, but we can play that."

Alice pinched the ridge of her nose and muttered. "Primey, this f-in place. It's hold 'em. Hold. Them. Slag and ya had to pick a human game too. Are you trying to be eye-ronic?" For all her snark, she was walking right towards the table.

"Human, huh?" said Fenrir, following her, "I was just looking for an open table."

Alice scratched her forehead. "Well I think it's human. Ma!" A round black computing device popped out from her chest, just below the collar. It projected text into the air in front of her.

Texas Hold 'em, one of several hundred main variants of Poker.  Origin: Earth.

"See?" Alice waved her hand, "There we go."

Hold 'em peak popularity: approx. AR 25.

"The hell? Go to sleep, Ma." The portable computer promptly retracted back into her chest. "Always with the superfluit-itcity.." Alice muttered as she plopped down at the table. She hoped the waitress came by soon. After saving the town the least they could get was some good service.

Author:  Pyre [ Tue Feb 23, 2010 5:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

"Holographic display device? Neat," Fenrir said dryly as she sat down a space away from Alice. "Calling it 'mom', kind of wierd." The dark table blinked once in a dull, somewhat unoffensive shade of neon green, before coming to life, completely with futzy holographic dealer torso projected upwards in front of them.

"Feelin' lucky, pardners?" She asked far too cheerfuly, and Fenrir winced.

"Okay. I'm regretting this already," the wolf said, but pulled out a credit chit from on her thigh. The beauty of frontier gambling was that no one cared if you dug yourself a hole; unlike a lot of places, you didn't neat chits if you didnt' want them, you just bought in with a swipe. Addicts be damned. "Let's get this rolling." She looked at Alice. "Limit or no-limit?"

"This table follows standard no limit rules," the dealer provided cheerily. Fenrir grimaced.

"Just deal."

Author:  Psycko [ Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:52 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

Sunset had never felt very comfortable with crowds. Blending back towards the wall, she allowed herself to sink against it, letting her muscles relax. She folded her arms and looked around at the mass of gamblers. How many of them realized they'd come within a good spitting distance of death not ten minutes ago? Better to stay ignorant of some things, she figured.

She watched Fenrir and that new tagalong, Alice, sit down at the table to game. She envied Fenrir that ability to just switch combat mode off and turn social. She always seemed to want to withdraw into herself after a fight, and since she'd come to Dustball, after every skirmish and gunfight, it seemed to take more effort to come back from that withdrawn place.

"Looks like we're heroes. Can a hero buy a girl a drink?" Digger asked. Sunset glanced over to see he was smiling affably at her, also having sought a refuge from the casino patrons milling around.

Sunset decided to try and be a little more like Fenrir- turn it off and relax. If possible.

"Alright. Something cheap with a little kick to it." she said. That was about as relaxed as she'd get. "You're Digger, right?"

Author:  Pyre [ Wed Dec 29, 2010 5:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

"I'm out. So far out. Ridiculously out," Fenrir said, swaying slightly in her chair. She'd never been much good at gambling, especially when it came to games like poker. She couldn't bluff worth a damn, and her poker face? Everyone could read it. The rather copious amounts of alcohol she'd had certainly wasn't helping. She pushed herself away from the table, stumbling only slightly when she stood up, and looked out the window of the casino. The wolf-femme blinked in surprise when she saw night had fallen. "Primus," she muttered, "how long was I sitting down at this table for?"

Author:  riboflavin [ Thu Dec 30, 2010 4:32 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

Alice's holo-device dutifully answered:
Ten months, five days, eleven hours and thirty-six minutes

"Durnslagit now this thing's timer's off too," Alice complained with a smile. With the number of chips she had to cash in, it was hard to get bent out of shape over a computer glitch. "Can't even get it fixed 'cause every dang gearhead I show it to tries to steal it. 'Course most of em' dunno a quantum cubit from a vacuum tube anyhow."

Author:  Psycko [ Fri Dec 31, 2010 12:41 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

(You guys, this is a whole other level of necromancy. You're all nuts.)

"Three sheets to the wind already? You work fast, Fen," Sunset said, pulling up a chair at the table.

"I'll work through the neural net purification process soon enough. Let me enjoy my buzz," Fenrir said, leaning an elbow on the table near her friend. "You're usually not much of a card shark."

"Digger convinced me to take a shot at it, just once," Sunset said quietly. She'd reluctantly accepted it as an alternative to going into one of her more customary post-gunfight silences.

"All right...Alice? Deal 'em out," Sunset proposed.

Author:  Pyre [ Tue Jan 25, 2011 1:28 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

Fenrir leaned back against the bar, watching as Alice sat back down, more than willing to take another few hands and quite a few more creds. As she'd pointed out, neither Sunset or herself were all that good at gambling. She suddenly grinned, recalling a random old Earth film that had been playing in one of the cities they'd been to. "We deal in lead, friend," she said, and chuckled, finding the quote a lot more funny in her well-liquored state then she would normally.

"Something on your mind Fen?" Sunset said, looking up from the table, a little surprised at her friend's apparently good humor. Fenrir just smiled back, shaking her head as Sunset's hand of holo-cards dipped a little bit.

"Just watch your cards," she said.

Author:  riboflavin [ Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:04 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

Alice's attention span didn't go on very long, and she was bored with cards by now. You don't turn down the boss of the posse, though. You maybe even let her win a few small hands. And, you play a new game called Figure Out Who the Heck You're Dealing With Here.

"So, Sunset. Pretty name, got some double meanings, I like it. Whereabouts you from, originally?"

Author:  Psycko [ Sun Feb 27, 2011 3:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

"From hereabouts," Sunset said, looking at her cards. "Colony girl, built and raised. Left a while, came back not too long ago."

"Where'd you go before you came back?" Alice asked, wondering whether to cheat in her favor or the boss's. One thing Sunset seemed to have in her favor- one heck of a gambling face. She could've been sitting on a royal flush and wouldn't have blinked.

"Cybertron. Didn't like it. Loud, crowded...not nearly enough dust," Sunset said, cracking a very faint hint of a smile. "You a city girl?"

Author:  riboflavin [ Wed Mar 02, 2011 9:27 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

"Name a time and a place, I've been there," Alice answered, keeping it cryptic. "Seriously, what part of Cybertron? It's a big planet, I bet you just picked the wrong city to settle in."

Author:  Psycko [ Thu Mar 03, 2011 12:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

"I never exactly settled down," Sunset said, just as cryptically. "Had to keep moving from city to city. Stayed in one place for longer than most, tho- Prime City."

"What'd you do there?" Alice asked.

"Nothing interesting," Sunset said, anteing up her chips.

Author:  riboflavin [ Thu Mar 10, 2011 9:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mission #2: The Train of Consequences

Alice anted. "Prime City. Ya'll never find a more rusted heap a scum and villainy. If ye came from here ya shoulda felt right at home!" Alice laughed, "Unless -- this weren't after Mayor Illiad, was it?"

"Mayor who?" said Sunset, "It was Mayor Argon when I was there."

"Yeah," said Alice, recalling the timeline, "Illiad.. she maybe ain't even police commissioner yet. Hell, this universe maybe ain't even got an Illiad. I need another drink over here! ...Anyhow I lived in PC about a year as a kid. Horde a rats fighting over a half size trash can, that city was. That's until.. My parents ya see, if they'd been out here they'd be priced fifty grand each. Most bots like that, in the sit they got into in PC, woulda snatched whateve they could and blasted off. My folks went nuclear on all those rats. Took out some straight up, set others up like dominoes. Ya could say the events they set in motion turned that city around." Alice stared off wistfully, then cracked a smile, "Heh. Mighta' been their plan all along. Manny did get his naval base built..."

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